Despite Illegal Status, Buyers Get Home Loans

Each week, Pedro Morlet knocks on doors in the Bay Area, looking for illegal immigrants. Morlet isn't an immigration agent. He's a real estate agent, and he's scouting for business. "Do you want a house, work and pay taxes but don't have a Social Security number?" reads his flier, written in Spanish and tailored to his potential customers. "We can help you LEGALLY!" Across the country, particularly in Texas and parts of the Midwest, hundreds of illegal immigrants have bought homes using special lending programs that bypass the need for a Social Security number. Now, with backing from some of the country's largest financial institutions, this newest effort to tap customers for the real estate market is moving to the nation's largest concentration of illegal immigrants — California.